This is part of an ongoing travelogue. To start at the beginning, please click here.
Today we had made prior bookings to visit Hua Hin Hills Vineyard, one of the few vineyards in Thailand. It is rather surprising grapes can grow so well here, when the weather isn’t all that different from Malaysia. To get there, you can either hire your own transport (usually as part of a day trip), or book the Vineyard’s own shuttle. the shuttle leaves from downtown twice a day, 10.30am and 3.00pm. It is best to book in advance for this shuttle, they only have 10 seats. And you’ll need to pay the transport fee of THB 300 per person at least a day in advance.
So in the morning we took a leisurely breakfast, followed by a tuk-tuk to the pick up point at Villa Market.
The transport is a new van, and the trip takes about 40 minutes. En route you can see some interesting sights, like the Artist village, and a very famous temple called Wat Huay Mongkol.
Once you reach the Vineyard, it is quite an impressive sight.
Guests arriving through their shuttle are greeted with a smile and go through a comprehensive tour experience. First up, you’re ushered to nice restaurant / bar. This open air building is a little reminiscent of the Boh Tea Centre in Sungai Palas.
There you are served with a glass of refreshing, ice-cold grape juice, while enjoying the breathtaking view of the entire vineyard and hills far away.
Then you are brought on a open air 4WD tour of the vineyard. A local guide will follow along to explain the different types of grapes (7 types) and the planting-to-harvesting process. Harvesting is only during February-March, so unless you are there during this period, you won’t get to see it.
It is interesting to note the winepress and distillery is in Bangkok, not here, so you won’t get to see it.
After the quick tour, you can walk through the entire vineyard by yourself. In addition to seeing the grapes up close, there are a lot of beautiful flowers and shrubs to admire.
For a small fee, you’ll also get to ride on hairy elephant. Although this guy tends to stop and eat the grass every few yards.
After walking through the vineyard, you can go back to the restaurant and order some lunch. we weren’t hungry so we just ordered some grape cheesecake. You can also try their wine tasting menu (we didn’t).
This place is very interesting and beautiful, but it takes half a day. Lots of good photo ops if the weather is good.
Next – Hua Hin Railway Station.